FFIS volunteer Susie Trant shares her experience as a Conversation Friend to Juyeon Lee, the South Korean student she is matched with:
As a first-time Conversation Friend volunteer, I have been delighted with the connection I’ve made with my “match.” Over these few months, Juyeon Lee and I have met almost every week for various activities: often a walk or a bit of sightseeing, sometimes a meal, and each time, a lovely chat. At first, topics focused on living in the U.S. and Eugene, sharing family info or just navigating every day English. Recently, we have graduated to more weighty subjects.
Since she is from South Korea, and especially considering current events, our exchanges have been illuminating for me. And I believe it’s helpful for her to open up and express herself clearly on issues that personally concern her. Perfecting her English is not really possible, but her oral confidence has been growing and her English has improved in just a short time. Overall, this experience has been rich for us both, and I’m sure our friendship will endure even after she returns home. ~ Susie Trant
The Conversation Friend program will be matching local community volunteers with University of Oregon international students starting in October. To learn more about the program, contact June Brooks, the FFIS Conversation Friend Coordinator, at 541-513-4086 or JuneEBrooks@gmail.com